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Friday, January 14, 2011

Shrimp Pad Thai

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there are certain asian foods that i believe shouldn't be recreated at home unless you're Mom (not A mom, but you know... your mom) or you're a professional. foods like dim sum chicken feet, bun bo hue, or pad thai. i don't care how many people say those dishes are easy to recreate, it's still not the same, or better.

let me go ahead and be honest with you. i wasn't all that happy with this pad thai. there is no way i could compete with my memories of street Pad Thai in bangkok. and i really had no inclination to try. but my friend Angel in spain really likes this dish and has requested it repeatedly. so i set out to learn how to make it and this is the very, very extremely poverty stricken version of Shrimp Pad Thai.

more confessions:
please refer back to SheSimmers on how to prep tamarind pulp. i used Chez Pim's Pad Thai for Beginners as a guideline. despite prepping in advance, i still forgot a few things, like the peanuts, lime and cilantro garnish. i was not fast, and damnit, i was stingy with the oil; i'm not starting off this new year sipping veggie oil in my food. as a result, there was some crazy ass burning and smoke in the abode. that was alarming. the shrimp? burnt on one side. you don't see that in the pix. but this was my first attempt.

yes. i will do this again, without much expectation that it'll be as good as bangkok's street vendors. and that's ok. mediocrity is underrated.

just kidding.

currently hearting the hell out of Alpha Rev, New Morning. (thx rwj)

18 comments:

  1. Props for trying Lan. I would dive into a steaming plate of that and be quite happy.

    ReplyDelete
  2. i feel the same way about falfel. i ate that almost everyday in israel and i've tried to recreate here... but it's never been quite right.

    usually it's the spice ratio, but sometimes it's the consistency.

    i keep trying though ;) and one day i'll get it right and invite you over for israeli street falfel!

    ReplyDelete
  3. My one attempt at homemade pad thai involved a box of that Thai Kitchen stuff. Yours would blow it out of the Chao Phraya River.

    ReplyDelete
  4. But it looks so pretty. :P

    I've tried making it twice and have been dissatisfied both times too. Not sure what it is, but I haven't come up with a version I like as much as the restaurant's version.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I love pad thai but I have yet to try and make it on my own. I kind of like just going to my favorite Thai place and having them do it all up for me...plus my usual waiter is a hunk so I get dinner and a (lovely) show all in one.

    ReplyDelete
  6. At least you tried...I am still too afraid to even try this! Keep it up...you'll get it soon!

    ReplyDelete
  7. You're absolutely right! Some dishes just need to be left for the professionals! But it's good for you for trying!

    ReplyDelete
  8. With all healthy , natural and fresh ingredients, you simply can't go wrong. It looks great, well done.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Sometimes you just have to pick your battles. I find pad Thai is too damned much work...mincing dried shrimp, chopping pickled turnip, preparing tamarind pulp, toasting and chopping peanuts...

    Not saying you shouldn't try again. I'm a firm believer in DIY in the kitchen, but it's certainly one of the more difficult Thai dishes in terms of technique. And despite your dissatisfaction with it, I must say, your picture looks better than most of the pad Thais I've seen at restaurants.

    ReplyDelete
  10. wendi, thanks. as i always say, failure is just an excuse to try again. next batch i make, i'll send some over your ways.

    sm, yes, i would love to try your israeli street falfel!

    ali, you're hilarious. haha. thanks.

    chi wc, it's frustrating right? we just gotta keep trying!

    elleswim, i completely understand :)

    cubicle, you should try it too!

    jessica and medifast, thank you.

    dp, thank you, you are too nice! sometimes all that prep & hardwork is worth it, i'll get it right one of these days. :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. wendi, thanks. as i always say, failure is just an excuse to try again. next batch i make, i'll send some over your ways.

    sm, yes, i would love to try your israeli street falfel!

    ali, you're hilarious. haha. thanks.

    chi wc, it's frustrating right? we just gotta keep trying!

    elleswim, i completely understand :)

    cubicle, you should try it too!

    jessica and medifast, thank you.

    dp, thank you, you are too nice! sometimes all that prep & hardwork is worth it, i'll get it right one of these days. :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. With all healthy , natural and fresh ingredients, you simply can't go wrong. It looks great, well done.

    ReplyDelete
  13. You're absolutely right! Some dishes just need to be left for the professionals! But it's good for you for trying!

    ReplyDelete
  14. I love pad thai but I have yet to try and make it on my own. I kind of like just going to my favorite Thai place and having them do it all up for me...plus my usual waiter is a hunk so I get dinner and a (lovely) show all in one.

    ReplyDelete
  15. But it looks so pretty. :P

    I've tried making it twice and have been dissatisfied both times too. Not sure what it is, but I haven't come up with a version I like as much as the restaurant's version.

    ReplyDelete
  16. My one attempt at homemade pad thai involved a box of that Thai Kitchen stuff. Yours would blow it out of the Chao Phraya River.

    ReplyDelete
  17. i feel the same way about falfel. i ate that almost everyday in israel and i've tried to recreate here... but it's never been quite right.

    usually it's the spice ratio, but sometimes it's the consistency.

    i keep trying though ;) and one day i'll get it right and invite you over for israeli street falfel!

    ReplyDelete
  18. Props for trying Lan. I would dive into a steaming plate of that and be quite happy.

    ReplyDelete